What is Horsetail?
Due to its two distinctive types of stems, the horsetail is considered by many herbalists to be a very unique plant. One of the stems grows early in spring and looks somewhat like asparagus while the other appears in summer and has thin, green, sterile stems and looks like the feathery tail of a bird.
Horsetail has served mankind as an herbal remedy since ancient times and has traditionally been used to stop bleeding, increase urine production, repair broken bones, and relieve rheumatic conditions such as arthritis.
How do Horsetail works?
Horsetail contains high concentrations of silicic acid and other silicates. Horsetail also contains potassium, aluminum, and manganese, along with a variety of flavonoids. These flavonoids, as well as other substances found in horsetail, are what appear to provide this herb with strong diuretic effects that promote the loss of water from the body; the silicates found in horsetail are believed responsible for the herb's ability to strengthen connective tissue and give it anti-arthritic actions.
A few herbal specialists believe that the organic silicon concentrations found in horsetail may also promote bone and cartilage formation and are useful for treating brittle nails and related conditions.
More recently, horsetail has been studied for its possible usefulness in connection with arthritis, osteoporosis, and other conditions of bones and cartilage. Horsetail contains significant amounts of silica and smaller amounts of calcium. Both silica and calcium are components of bones, joints, and connective tissues such as tendons and ligaments.